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15In a word: The Oregon coast.

The specs: #00978   
768 N. Main St., Oregon 53575
Details at Yelp

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JM ate the sesame chicken with a fountain drink.
Nichole ate the orange beef with free tea.
We split the crab rangoon.
The bill was $25, or $12.50ish/person, plus tip.
JM and Nichole both gave Moonstar a C- (see our grading rubric).

Moonstar in Oregon is a place to get a basic Chinese carryout, but it felt like they're either coasting on being just that, or not bothering to spruce up, knowing that the little extras might not get appreciated. The place is not as rundown as Jade Garden was when we went, but there was definitely that vibe - as if, had Jade Garden been taken better care of, it would look like Moonstar.

We went for dinner but they also appear to have a lunch buffet. We got our customary crab rangoon, which Nichole found OK but JM thought were bitter. With table 15 we got eggroll, which was standard. The sauces and heavy batter on the sesame chicken and orange beef were almost identical.

This seems like a good time to revisit the theory of the "Chinese restaurant in a box." JM cannot remember who propounded this theory but the idea is that many Chinese restaurants have the same pictures of standard dishes, the same oversized Chinese menus with only the location name changed, the same open signs in the window.  These are probably ordered from some large clearinghouse, with minimal customization.  This might be Oregon's Chinese restaurant in a box, and if you want hot Chinese food delivery in Oregon -- it seems your only choice.

Sesame chickenOrange beef

We didn't get fortune cookies, but there was free hot tea (the actual cost being a nagging feeling of being judged a cheapskate). We wish we could like Moonstar more but it is what it is.


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